IDERA ER/Studio Overview

IDERA ER/Studio is the #7 ranked solution in our list of top Database Development and Management tools. It is most often compared to erwin Evolve: IDERA ER/Studio vs erwin Evolve

What is IDERA ER/Studio?

IDERA ER/Studio is a powerful suite for business-driven data modeling that enables companies to create an enterprise architecture foundation for data governance. With round-trip support for multiple database platforms, data architects have the power to reverse-engineer, analyze, and optimize existing databases easily from diverse platforms. Data professionals can easily capture and share models, metadata, data sources, and glossaries across the organization for improved alignment between the organization and Information Technology. Organizational stakeholders can take part in the metadata definition workflow and access information on models and metadata at the right level for their needs.

Unlike its competition, it provides the broadest range of data platform support, industry-leading enterprise-level capabilities, visual data lineage and flow modeling, full dimensional modeling for data warehousing and business intelligence, and business data objects to bridge the gap between developers and data architects. It also provides a complete solution for enterprise architecture and data governance, extensive model change management, unique incorporation of true enterprise data dictionaries, unique linking of constructs across models, integrated visual data lineage import, and integrated data and business process modeling.

IDERA ER/Studio is also known as IDERA ER Studio, ER/Studio, ER/Studio Enterprise Team Edition.

Buyer's Guide

Download the Architecture Management Buyer's Guide including reviews and more. Updated: May 2021

IDERA ER/Studio Customers

Newmont Mining, Entrust, Accolade, TalkTalk, Catalina, Protective Life, NTT Data, dir systèmes, Microsoft; American Express, Astellas Pharma, AstraZeneca, Coriant, Fedex, GlaxoSmithKline, PepsiCo, Prudential, Wells Fargo

IDERA ER/Studio Video

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SM
VP Product Strategy, Analytics at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Good resource for designing a database

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case of this solution is to design our database.

What needs improvement?

This solution needs more precise documentation.

For how long have I used the solution?

One to three years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

We are still testing the stability of the product.

How was the initial setup?

The setup was straightforward but we lacked receipt of support from the solution. 

What other advice do I have?

It is a good product but it needs improvement of the documentation process.
DK
Database Developer at a financial services firm with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
The data modeling module is very fast, reliable, up-to-date, and easy to use

What is our primary use case?

We use it for data modeling.

Pros and Cons

  • "The data modeling module is important to me because I am a database developer and designer... It's very fast, reliable, up-to-date, so easy to use, smooth."
  • "IDERA keeps up with the versions of Oracle and SQL Server that I'm using. I mostly use SQL Server and when there are new features, a new type of index, for example, IDERA also includes them in upgrades of the data modeling tool."
  • "The only thing I had an issue with was licensing, and the support was very good."

What other advice do I have?

I would recommend IDERA ER/Studio, but people in my profession are divided by their loyalties. I am loyal to this product, but if you talk to another developer who has been using erwin all his life, that person might say, "Hey, erwin is better." I say ER/Studio is good but in the world of developers, people still have to evaluate things for themselves. I have no complaints. That's why I've been using it for so long. I rate it a nine out of ten. It's easy and fast to use.
Find out what your peers are saying about IDERA, erwin, Inc., SAP and others in Architecture Management. Updated: May 2021.
501,499 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Senior Business Intelligence Developer at a construction company with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
Database schemas help us understand the logic, the business processes, behind the scenes

What is our primary use case?

We use it to develop our data warehouse, it's the core server.

Pros and Cons

  • "It's much easier to develop the database structure and change it on the fly, rather than doing it manually in SQL Server itself. That saves time."
  • "The most important features are logical and physical models that we can compare and develop. Also, the Data Dictionary can be created out of your studio. Finally, database schemas help understand the logic that's behind the scene, behind the SQL tables. Especially when there are a lot of them, the schemas help everyone understand the business processes."
  • "when there are some links to the external databases, if this database is not structured it is not uploaded. It gives me errors and I cannot see the view that was created on this structure and I cannot change those views, even manually. It skips the views. I have to ignore those views. I cannot re-upload them because it gives me an error."
  • "I would like to upload, a database with about 3,000 tables. It takes so much time and, finally, it freezes the whole solution so that I actually cannot work with that environment. For the data warehouse, it's fine because I have 20 or 30 tables. It works fine. But, when I reverse-engineer the database with 3,000 tables, it freezes and it's hard to upload and reverse-engineer such environments in ER/Studio."

What other advice do I have?

Any advice would depend on the infrastructure, but just start using it more and more. It's mainly for developing databases. If you have a smaller number of tables and all of them are relational, you may not need this software. But, if you have a data warehouse that needs to be developed and you need to frequently implement changes to the databases, it will help. I rate the solution a rating of eight out of ten. I would consider it one of the best solutions on the market.
JM
Database Administrator at a government with 10,001+ employees
Real User
We use the solution to create data models which describe our company's data architecture

What is our primary use case?

We use it for data modeling.

Pros and Cons

  • "We use the solution to create data models which describe our company's data architecture"
  • "The solution could be sped up, as it is a little slow (e.g., when it's doing its database compare)."
  • "The screens are a bit outdated. They could use a new look and feel."

What other advice do I have?

You will save time, switching from whatever product you're using. It's the best data modeling tool out there. It's fast. It can do what I need it to do. We connected to Oracle, MySQL, and SQL Server (as data sources) to this solution. I have plans to expand the use of the built-in tool functionality. However, I haven't had the time.
MP
DBA at a consultancy with 501-1,000 employees
Real User
Enables us to audit production, to make sure it matches what we have designed

What is our primary use case?

We use it for data modeling. It is the way we communicate requirements, both for gathering and presenting them. We also use it for putting together our metadata and publishing it.

Pros and Cons

  • "The most valuable features are... those that enable me to represent the database to the development community and the business users."
  • "It would be helpful if they could create a generic JSON database type, as a target database, rather than a specific one like Mongo."

What other advice do I have?

I really like ER/Studio personally, so for me, it's a nine out of 10. I like it because it doesn't let you make stupid mistakes - and it's easy to make a stupid mistake. The tool can save you a lot of trouble. The only other tool I used before this was Oracle Designer, back in the 90s. This is way better than that. I haven't used anything else, so I'm a loyal customer.
RK
Asst. Director, Data Management & Analytics at a university with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Given the data we're hosting, the dimensional modeling is very useful

What is our primary use case?

We use it for data modeling.

Pros and Cons

  • "Developing new dimensional models; for the data we're hosting, dimensional modeling is more useful."
  • "One limitation I have found in ER/Studio is that when you want to make some changes to the table definitions, you have to go item by item. You cannot do it globally. Another issue concerns defining the foreign keys between the different tables. It is a little more tedious in the ER/Studio than in ERrwin. With ERwin it is direct."

What other advice do I have?

ER/Studio is good. It is really user-friendly and you can start without much training. If modeling is a technique you know, you're familiar with all the concepts, you can sit with the tool and start doing the modeling. Not much training is needed.
MG
DBA at a manufacturing company with 201-500 employees
Real User
Enables us to generate a physical model from the logical, making it easier to review with stakeholders during model validation

What is our primary use case?

Our primary use case is for building out data models. As the DBA, I am also responsible for modeling the OLTP databases as well as our warehouse. Our databases can have well over 200 tables. Add in the views and we can hit 500 objects pretty quickly. We currently have over 30 databases. Without solid models, it would be impossible to manage all the interdependencies.

Pros and Cons

  • "One of the valuable features is inheritance when joining tables. When setting up RI and domains and rules, ER/Studio does a lot of the grunt, boilerplate code that would otherwise have to be hand-coded."
  • "When validating the model, the ability to provide sub-models to developers, and generate a physical model from the logical, makes it easier to review a logical model with stakeholders."
  • "The number of options can be overwhelming at times. That is not necessarily a bad thing but for a newbie, it can be daunting."

What other advice do I have?

There are a lot of options, so take the time to play with it a bit before you start doing things the hard way.
JC
Database Administrator at a healthcare company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Our developers can now see the relationships

What is our primary use case?

Data modeling.

How has it helped my organization?

The developers can see the relationships now.

What is most valuable?

The reverse engineering is the most important feature. The relationships are also important.

What needs improvement?

When building the relationships there should be a little more flexibility.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

I have not encountered any issues with stability.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

I have not encountered any issues with scalability.

How are customer service and technical support?

Tech support is pretty good. They resolve issues right away, I usually don't have to wait too long.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I used a…
JV
IT Specialist at a government with 10,001+ employees
Real User
Helps us identify duplication and non-conformity in our databases and create a more standardized solution

What is our primary use case?

We're supposed to be using it for designing new data models, appending and editing data models. We're doing a lot of reverse engineering on our existing databases. But we have a plan in the works to begin using it as part of our data governance process, something we don't have currently.

Pros and Cons

  • "We found a lot of duplication, a lot of non-conformity in the way our databases were designed. By identifying these situations, we're able to go back in and try to create a more standardized solution."
  • "We did have a big issue when we upgraded to the 2016 version. The Team Server portion never did quite install correctly, and/or the database was corrupted, and we never figured it out."
  • "Tech support is a sticking point with me. I am really disappointed in the tech support. We pay for the Platinum level. It takes hours to get a response."

What other advice do I have?

Especially with the Repository/Team Server installation, get Idera to install it for you. Just watch over their shoulder while they do it. Otherwise, just learn it and enjoy it. I rate this product at nine out of 10 because it does so much. It's so powerful. The only reason I don't give it a 10 is because it probably has things in it that I'll never use because I don't know how to use them.
CL
Database Designer at a manufacturing company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
Enables us to visually represent what database tables will look like and their relationships

What is our primary use case?

Data modeling and database design for PepsiCo.

Pros and Cons

  • "We have a database design group of about 15 people. The Repository enables multiple people to work on the same model at the same time. We have fully integrated models, so we have one model for the enterprise data warehouse, one model for MDM, with a lot of sub-models in these things. People work on different parts of the model at different times. So the repository enables us to share the models, and keep track of what everybody is working on."
  • "Valuable features include the ability to visually represent what the database tables are going to look like and their relationships. Also, the ability to document the definitions of the tables and the columns that are in a table so that we can communicate what the data is and how it should be used."
  • "What I would like to see improved is the reliability of the releases, releases that are a little less buggy."
  • "I'd like the ability to debug the errors ourselves instead of having to call them. There are certain types of errors that, I wouldn't say they come up regularly, but when you have an error it is very often the same type of error. Knowing that it's a Type III or Type I, it would be nice to have some kind of debugging facility for us to use to find out where the problem that threw that error occurs. That would be a really cool feature."
  • "We would always like to see Repository performance improve, checking in and checking out."

What other advice do I have?

Try to take advantage of as many of the features as you can. It has a wealth of time-savers and features that are extremely useful. We haven't been able to use all of them because we already had so much done. To try and use some of them by going back over thousands and thousands of tables and columns would have been impossible. If you are is just starting with it, if you can take advantage of the Data Lineage and some of the other interesting features that it has, it is definitely worthwhile. My rating comes from a purely selfish perspective, in the way I use it. For what I do, I give it an…
PS
Data Architect at a computer software company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
The portal enables our entire team to see the model, but licensing and upgrades could be improved

What is our primary use case?

The primary use would be all the data modeling of the enterprise. People can access the data model through the portal: all the modeling and all the data dictionary, column-level documentation, glossaries, etc. We use the portal for maintaining those. The main tool that we use is IDERA Architect on the team portal.

Pros and Cons

  • "It's easy to model and has a user-friendly interface. I like the team portal because, once we upload, the entire team can see the model."
  • "Whenever there is a new version, there are a lot of release notes on the technical side of it, but I would like to be told why are we doing the upgrade... What I would like to really see is how this benefits us from the business point of view. What are the real benefits that the user gets? I want some kind of way white paper. The release notes describe the technical enhancements but, from the layman's point of view, if someone asks me what are the business benefits of this upgrade, I don't have any documentation to explain it to the business."

What other advice do I have?

It's a good tool but we have not had much training, so we are really exploring it on our own. There are some features we are still working on with our stakeholders to implement. So my advice to other customers who are implementing this product is to really understand the full features of the product and try to implement all the features at the beginning. Get training in all areas of expertise before launching the product. I wish we could have done that from the beginning.
Data Architect at a insurance company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Real User
We have been able to quickly create models for our enterprise-wide databases

What is our primary use case?

To develop an underlying platform upon which to base our data governance program by creating a central repository for maintaining and disseminating logical, physical models for our enterprise-wide databases.

Pros and Cons

  • "We are able to document the data lineage and data flows of our data from one system to another."
  • "We have been able to quickly create models for our enterprise-wide databases, even when some of them are third-party databases."
  • "Modeling with Data Architect: We can quickly reverse-engineer a database from an existing database or create a model from scratch."
  • "Data lineage tracking: It allows us to identify upstream and downstream systems using data."
  • "I would like to see better documentation/help for the Data Architect tool. Creation of tutorials would be nice, as there are some features which are not as clearly defined as they should be."
Administrador de Dados at a non-tech company with 5,001-10,000 employees
Vendor
Enables creation of multiple automations, improving security and centralization

What is most valuable?

This application does a lot of things, as do competitor products, but the main reason to go with this product was the ability to create many automations, where we can improve our work and our process.

How has it helped my organization?

Organization, security, centralization.

What needs improvement?

The product is pricey.

For how long have I used the solution?

About four years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Sometimes our version is a little unstable. But I think this problem occurs because our version is old. We are in the migration process to the current version.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No.

How are customer service and technical support?

Very good. When we need, they respond to us…
Database Architect at a healthcare company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor
Although it allows for many different options for what can be displayed on the model, it would be nice if they allowed entity objects (attributes, indexes, keys...) as well as the textual definition.

What other advice do I have?

It's a great tool for modeling and I'm generally very happy with its features.
Data Analyst at a university with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor
It is recommended for those with the resources to maintain it.
This review comes from the point of view of a technical tools administrator who is only an occasional data modeller at this stage. We're using Embarcadero Repository Server with ER/Studio, Team Server and the Data Lineage Tool, on in-house servers. Trialled on workstations from 2013 (XE3), first installed in Development server environment in August 2014 (XE5), went to Production in December 2014. Currently up to XE7 in Dev, XE6 in Prod. We installed with onsite assistance, and had a quick and effective response from the development team when the onsite Embarcadero resource requested a workaround for our non-standard MS SQL server port. Licensing for Repository Server is a bizarre chain of: Install Embarcadero License Center on hosting server (only…
Business Intelligence Analyst DBA at a government with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor
I think ER/Studio Data Architect is priced high, but it comes with user-friendly features.
Sr. Data Engineer at a computer software company with 501-1,000 employees
Vendor
If it natively supports your RDBMS, and you have someone to support the licensed server, it’s a great solution.

What other advice do I have?

As long as the tool natively supports the RDBMS databases you use, and you have someone that can support the licensed server, it’s a great solution.
Associate Director, Enterprise Data Management, Practice Lead for Life Sciences UK&I at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Consultant
It provides us with offline availability using TeamServer, but reusability of objects across multiple workspaces is a feature that would help.

What other advice do I have?

Make effective use of Entity Reusability for an enterprise level usage.
ProQuest Development and Quality Assurance Support at a tech services company with 10,001+ employees
Consultant
It helped us to make extracts and split databases when we were selling parts of our company.

What other advice do I have?

My advice would be to use the Technical Support they're very good if you've got questions they're always there to help.
Infrastructure Expert at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Consultant
It's our primary means of publishing data models, but it needs to use more modern standard dialogs.

What other advice do I have?

It is a very robust, industrial strength data modeling product, intended Ideally for very large development projects where a good ROI can be obtained.
Principal Data Architect at a tech company with 201-500 employees
Vendor
We can run macros on logical and physical model, but registration always seemed difficult and time consuming.

What is most valuable?

Running macros on logical and physical models Compare and Merge

How has it helped my organization?

I am able to create (and publish) logical data models, apply naming standards using macro, generate the physical models and DDL. This makes the development process consistent and clean, improves communication and quality.

What needs improvement?

Product registration always seemed difficult and time consuming.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been a user of ER/Studio for at least ten years.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

No issues encountered.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No issues encountered.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No issues encountered.

How are

Data Management Specialist at a government with 1,001-5,000 employees
Vendor
Data Dictionary Bindings is not very intuitive, but there are no stability issues.

What is most valuable?

Repository > Diagrams Security > Security Center Tools > Generate Reports Entity > Notes Attribute > Notes

What needs improvement?

Diagram Versioning is not very intuitive Data Dictionary Bindings is not very intuitive

For how long have I used the solution?

I've used it for three years.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

No issues encountered.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Not with the current release.

How are customer service and technical support?

Customer Service: It's good. Technical Support: It's good.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

I have personally used many modelling tools. My current company standardized on this one.

What about the implementation team?

Senior SQL Server Developer at a tech vendor with 201-500 employees
Vendor
We're able to control check-in's of our onshore and offshore developers while maintaining schema views, but the current version does not properly generate SQL Server-computed columns.
Senior Consultant with 51-200 employees
Vendor
You can compare your models against the database, but the repository can be slow with big data sets.

What is most valuable?

Ease of use It looks good enough Ability to create HTML reports Ability to compare the model against the database

What needs improvement?

Repository causes continuous problems, as it's slow and sometimes crashes. Integration with Active Directory does not function perfectly.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've used it for five years.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

If you use repository, it can get slow with big data models.

How are customer service and technical support?

I have received answers to issues within a week from a report.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

Nope, and I hear that this is the best data modelling tool for data warehouse scenarios.

How was the initial setup?

Senior Consultant with 501-1,000 employees
Vendor
We can maintain a data dictionary, enforce naming standards, and have a built-in macro facility, but printing ERDs on a plotter needs improvement.

What other advice do I have?

There are only a few companies providing enterprise grade products in this area and Embarcadero is one of three. I think it's the best due to pricing and good overall support. It has the main features needed for this kind of work and is often seen as a leader.
Director at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Consultant
Great product. Tedious implementation and maintenance. Ultimately worth it considering other options.

What other advice do I have?

Great product. Tedious implementation and maintenance. Ultimately worth it considering other options.
Director at a tech services company with 51-200 employees
Consultant
Great product however their delivery & licensing mechanisms are abysmal
I have been using it for the last eight years, after previously having used PowerDesigner and ERWin. It is a great product, no doubt. Embarcadero's delivery & licensing mechanisms, however, are abysmal. Licensing servers, app distribution servers, sluggish Java apps to launch the actual tools and poor documentation of how to configure and use these requiring repeated CS calls. This is not to mention that there are no slimline versions (read: cheaper) that could be used by smaller companies to do physical/logical modeling for a single platform. I bet this discourages many companies from adopting a design-first approach in favor of only creating data models as after-the-fact documentation on occasion with lesser tools. Perhaps Embarcadero is not interested in anything…
Infrastructure Expert at a tech services company with 1,001-5,000 employees
Consultant
Huge advantage is that it gives you full access to its automation model.
What has proven to be a HUGE advantage of ER/Studio that was not really evaluated at the time we chose it is that it gives you full access to its automation model. This allows it to be controlled through code (VBA) in programs like MS Access. One reason this is helpful is that we work with huge models of around 1500 entities, 1500 tables, and 25,000 attributes and columns. We often find ourselves needing to make mass updates, and this is easily done with code in a tiny fraction of the time needed to do it manually. Another use is we can extract metadata in code and load it directly to an Oracle database (using MS Access) to publish for developers on the other side of the planet.